Reboot to ensure the mental health of your computer.
If you get one of those "Fatal Error", "Illegal Operation", "Bloomers Exploded", or other such dialog boxes telling you that something has gone terribly wrong.
No computer, no operating system, and no application program are perfect. This may even include things you run on your desktop. Believe it or not, things can go wrong with your computer. When they do, they always happen at the most inopportune time, and cause the greatest amount of damage possible. See The FishNose Universal Unified Theory of Everything. So, what does this mean to me? Well, I'm glad you asked. Every time a program crashes or your computer otherwise misbehaves, it leaves little remnants of bad stuff sitting in your computer's RAM. The only way to get rid of this bad stuff is to flush it down the old "toidy". In computer terms, this means you had best reboot your system.
If you continue to work after you have had some sort of crash, error, or other calamity, the results will soon begin to cascade. Things that were working just fine may go awry. If you had every intention of shutting down the computer and restarting it, but you put it off for too long, you are just asking for other programs to fail.
Also, program or system task crashes may have caused temporary damage to some parts of the operating system that you might not notice right away. The likelihood of other problems happening increases exponentially with each crash. Eventually, continuing to work even though you shouldn't will probably cause your computer to hang, or completely implode (of course at the worst possible time).
Even if everything seems okay right now, your instinct would be to restart the program that just crashed. This will compound the problem. Please, stop what your doing and take the couple of minutes required to restart the computer.
The first thing you should do is attempt to close all open programs (saving your work, of course). If a program appears not to be responding to your request to go away, you are seeing the first effects of your crash. Fear not - it can only get worse.
If Case 1 doesn't seem to be working and the computer does not respond to your request, you must resort to the "Ethiopian Strangle-Hold" maneuver.
Case 1 and Case 2 have failed you. You don't know where to turn now. You are developing an annoying itch in your middle ear. Try this:
Every precaution has been taken to insure that the procedures presented here will not cause damage to your computer system. However, Mind Over Machines Inc. will not be responsible for any damage caused directly or indirectly by any advice and/or procedures given anywhere on this web site. Likewise, we cannot be responsible for malfunctions caused by defective hardware, or unforeseen problems which arise from use of the standard Microsoft tools. If problems do arise, we may attempt to assist in the diagnosis and eventual remedy, but cannot be held liable or bound to do so.
Contents Copyright (c) 1999-2004, Mind Over Machines Inc.
Page last updated 08/28/04.